After an entire calendar year of work, Write to Publish finally happened! This past week has possibly been the longest and most stressful one I’ve spent in the program—and that includes any previous finals week.
As with all events like this, there were a certain number of hiccups and a few last-minute problems that popped up. And then of course the general fear that any event organizer has the days leading up to such a huge event, that no one is going to show up. I had several of those nightmares, several nights in a row. None of them came to fruition though.
Everything ran smoother than Sarah and I could have expected. All of our amazing panelists were excited and friendly and happy to get to know everyone in the green room, in the classroom, and at lunch. We could not have picked a more wonderful group of people to give advice to those looking to break into the business.
In addition to all their experience and advice, they offered glimpses into their own personal lives that allowed their audience to connect with them, like Stacey Wallace Benefiel revealing that she has “Write Free or Die” tattooed on her arm. She is now officially one of my personal heroes.
Kelly Williams Brown offered a crowded workshop on how to pitch one’s story to editors or agents; lessons that anyone who wants to get their book out into the world could benefit from. I hope all of our guests found someone to connect with during the course of the day and, if not, were at least inspired by Allison Moon’s excellent keynote speech that wrapped up the day. She spoke to heart of why we write—to communicate and to connect—and how the fear of “sucking” can block that. Instead, she urged, show people the scariest thing you’ve written and maybe go howl at the moon.
The second annual 10-day Portland State of Mind celebration has come and gone. This year, Portland State University hosted more than fifty events, kicking off with a downtown Portland scavenger hunt and ending with a day of community service. The Simon Benson Awards Dinner, Alumni Beer Launch Party, Food Week Carnival, OIT Technology Talks Series, and Viking football were just a few events that took place, including a preview of the upcoming 2014 Write to Publish conference.
People of varying ages attended the hour-long, informational presentation of Write to Publish at the Smith Memorial Student Union on October 23, 2013. Write to Publish is a writing conference that demystifies the publishing process for writers and others interested in the publishing industry. In the past, Write to Publish has focused on genre fiction and non-fiction, and has offered workshops that broached topics such as self-marketing and small-press publishing. Held at Portland State, the forthcoming, sixth-annual conference will focus on the New Adult genre, a recently emerged area of publishing that targets the 18–24 age demographic and addresses the issues faced when becoming an adult. The conference invites all ages of the public to explore the meaning of new adult, listen to authors, share in their experiences, and gain information about an industry that is ever-changing. This year, Write to Publish will feature several prominent authors and publishing professionals. Authors and professionals in attendance include:
Write to Publish will present key-note speakers and offer workshops. Various vendors will be in attendance and the conference will provide catered food from Anna Bannanas Café. The conference will be held February 15, 2014 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.; registration for the all-day event will open December 1, 2013 For more information, visit Write to Publish’s website at or stay up-to-date with their Facebook page.